Entire HDD must be used/partitioned?
I have a 40GB HDD (ssd) in use with a "quick install" where i see that the pfSense installer used/partitioned the entire drive. However, to maintain performance on this drive (and also to help the controller out with wear-levelling), i want to use 50% of the drive, or about 20GB for pfSense and leave 20GB unused. 20GB is way more than i need for pfSense, too.
I backed up my configuration file, wiped the SSD and went to reinstall, this time via the custom method. However, I cannot for the life of me work out how to partition it say, 50% to leave half the SDD unused. When I go to create a partition of say x amount of sectors (equivalent to half the drive's size) the installer asks would i like to expand the partition to fill the remaining sectors (GB value in brackets). The funny thing is, it asks, but there's no option to say no thanks! It is either yes, or go back to the Edit partition screen (http://doc.pfsense.org/images/5/59/Installer_edit_partitions.png) where if you create a partition with any number of sectors less than the total, the question about expanding the partition is asked.
I recall reading how pfsense can't be dual-booted etc. which is fine, but is this why the partition manager wants to create a partition over the entire drive? That the partition size must utilise the entire accessible drive?
As a workaround (and probably a better solution to the task) I have created a HPA of 20GB in size, so the drive appears as a 20GB drive itself (totalling 40GB). This allows the installer to do its thing, whilst achieving the above.
I haven't tried that in a while, but it may be that the console installer wants to do it that way.
If you can boot all the way up to the LiveCD and get at the GUI over the Web, navigate to /installer/ and use the web-based installer (it's not really publicized because it's still in testing). Just don't try to use ZFS, someone recently tried it and reported it as not functional.
Thanks for that. That sounds like quite a handy feature, and good to know for the future.